• Mount Agung alert kept at highest level

    Mount Agung, as seen on Dec. 5, 2017. Photo via Sutopo Purwo Nugroho/BNPB

    Indonesian authorities have kept Mount Agung’s alert status at the highest level as seismicity remains high and the volcano is still emitting clouds of steam.

    A wispy white plume of smoke was seen coming from the volcano’s crater this morning, leaning eastwards, according to a tweet by Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman for the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB).

    “In conclusion, the activity of Mount Agung is still high and there’s potential for an eruption. Therefore, the status of this volcano remains at level IV, or danger,” said Devy Kamil, senior volcanologist at Indonesia’s Volcanology and Geology Disaster Mitigation Agency (PVMBG).

    Kamil said that cloud, observed at 8:48am this morning, that looks like a cigarette puff is “medium pressure.”

    “We will continue to monitor in anticipation of the accumulation of gas beneath the surface of the Mount Agung crater, for the potential of an eruption,” Kamil said, as quoted by Antara Bali.

    Gas released on Monday contained sulfur dioxide, according to PVMBG monitoring.

    “This indicates, that although smoke released by Mount Agung is white, there is SO2 content and magmatic activities are continuing,” Kamil said on Tuesday.

    The volcano’s alert status has been at the highest alert level for over a week now, after it was raised on Nov. 27, triggering an airport shutdown of nearly three days.

    While the airport has been open since the afternoon of Nov. 29, a number of airlines have continued to cancel flights either to or from Bali.

    Bali remains safe those outside of the exclusion zone of 10 kilometers from the crater, but tourism to the island has taken a hit with so many changing flight schedules and prospective travelers not wanting to risk traveling to the island without insurance and getting stranded by ash clouds—many insurance providers won’t cover upcoming Bali trips because the volcano is a “known event.”

    Meanwhile, the raised alert status has resulted in the displacement of an estimated 100,000 locals, who have had to leave their homes and livelihoods behind.

    Sources: https://coconuts.co/bali/news/mount-agung-alert-kept-highest-level/
    Re-posted by Pande

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